Back surgery is notorious for resulting in debilitating consequences – so even if you have severe chronic back pain, you may be loath to consider having spine surgery. However, the techniques and technologies that are now used in performing spine surgery are amazingly successful.
Let’s answer some of the most frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding spine surgery:
What Are the Different Types of Spine Surgery?
There are various kinds of spine surgery that are designed to treat different types of back problems. Some of the most common spine surgeries include the following:
- Discectomy – removal of all or part of a disc in your spine
- Spinal Fusion – removal of a damaged disc and joining the adjacent vertebrae to naturally grow together (fuse) as one bone
- Disc Arthroplasty/Replacement – removal of a damaged spinal disc and replacing it with an artificial prosthetic disc
- Vertebroplasty – injection of bone cement into a vertebral fracture
- Kyphoplasty – similar to vertebroplasty, but injection of the cement is done via a tiny inflatable balloon
- Foraminotomy – widening of the space in a vertebra to relieve nerve compression
- Laminectomy – removal of the lamina in a vertebra to relieve nerve compression
- Tumor Removal – resection of a tumor on the spine
What Are the Minimally Invasive Types of Back Surgery?
Many types of spine surgery can now be done in a minimally invasive fashion, including:
- Lumbar fusion
- Lumbar decompression
- Posterior cervical (neck) foraminotomy
These complex medical procedures use highly specialized, minuscule surgical tools inserted through relatively small incisions.
What Are the Benefits of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery?
Thanks to the smaller incisions necessary, minimally invasive surgeries usually involve less bleeding, smaller scars, shorter hospital stays, reduced downtime during recovery, and fewer surgical risks (e.g., infections).
When Is an Artificial Disc Necessary?
Chronic disc conditions, such as degenerative disc disease, can be effectively treated by replacing the damaged disc with an artificial prosthetic disc into the space between the two vertebrae.
What Are the Advantages of Artificial Disc Implants vs. Spinal Fusion?
Compared to spinal fusion, artificial discs offer the following benefits:
- Greater flexibility in the spine
- Greater spinal integrity
- Limitation of the transfer of stress onto other discs in the spine when moving
- Increased functionality
What Are the Risks of Having Back Surgery?
You will want to have a highly experienced spine surgeon to operate on your back, because they will know how to avoid causing complications – which can include:
- Injury to the spinal cord, possibly causing partial paralysis
- Anesthesia issues (e.g., allergy)
- Significant bleeding
- Blood clots
Skilled Neurosurgeon in Colorado Springs
If you are looking for an outstanding back surgeon in Lone Tree, Parker, Aurora, or Colorado Springs, we are here for you at Front Range Spine and Neurosurgery. If you would like to schedule a consultation, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (303) 790-1800 or by filling out our appointment request form online now. We look forward to serving you!